Slaves Faced By John Douglass Essay

873 Words Feb 16th, 2016 4 Pages
Slaves encounter tremendous challenges to learn knowledge. Douglass, a young teenage slave, “live in Master Hugh’s family about seven years” (61). He is fortunate to learn the alphabet from his sympathetic mistress at first. However, Mr. Hugh perceives that his wife educates Douglass; then, he forbids his wife from teaching the salve. To preserve her slaveholder’s power, Mrs. Hugh loses her kindness to become a cruel slave owner; she deprives Douglass’s opportunities of learning since “education and slavery were incompatible with other each” (Douglass 61). In fact, slaveholders teach slaves to read and write, which is disadvantageous to them. When slaves become literate, they can run away to escape from their masters’ control. Therefore, Douglass realizes that education is the key to freedom for slavers.
Despite the obstacles of gaining knowledge, Douglass is motivated to get literate because he understands education is the path to freedom. He constantly bribes the “little white boys” and the “poor white children” who live closely with him to teach him reading with bread during he is “sent on errands” (Douglass 62). When he is twelve, he acquires a book “The Columbian Orator”, which provokes him the critical thinking about slavery and freedom. The dialogue, in this book, illustrates that the slave who is captured back for his escapes from his master convinces his master to elect to free him. Through reading the Sheridan’s speeches that are from the same book, he claims,…

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